Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Farewell, Friends

no, i'm not leaving.  but as some of you know, the series finale of dexter was this weekend.  don't worry, there are no spoilers here.  this is a blog about food, not what happens on a tv show.  but, to dexter, deb, angel, quinn, harrison, masuka, and the rest of miami metro, we bid you adieu.  for nearly a decade we have welcomed you into our home on sunday nights.  so on your final night, we will have a special dinner:  steak and beer.  for those of you who are familiar with the show, you know why i went with this option:  whenever deb and dexter have dinner together, they have of course, steak and beer.

now, you know we couldn't just have steak and beer.  we also had brown rice and fresh green beans.  do you know the secret to cooking the perfect steak?  let me share it with you, as my good friend, uncle vo, shared it with me years ago.  1.  hot grill, like 400+ degrees.  2.  throw steak (lightly seasoned with a little salt and pepper) on there and cook for 2 mins.  3.  turn steak 180 degrees to get perfect grill lines and cook an additional 2 mins.  4.  flip steak over and cook for 2 mins.  5.  repeat step 3.  and voila.  perfect steak in 8 mins.
but our "dexter meal" wouldn't be complete without blood splatter cookies.  completing the look by wrapping them in cellophane.
have you ever had a sugar cookie from kneaders bakery?  mr d ranks them as number 1.  i found their recipe online here.  not a copycat, but their actual recipe.  pretty cool that they give it out.  mostly because they know that even with their exact recipe, theirs are much better than how mine turned out.  but they were pretty good.  a good first effort.  the recipe indicates that it will make 4 dozen, so i halved the recipe, and still ended up with 3 dozen.  also, i could not find lemon flavoring, which is supposed to be a powdered ingredient found near the lemon juice, so i just used lemon extract.  it turned out fine, not overpowering on the lemon flavor.
Kneaders Sugar Cookies
1 c butter
1 1/8 c sugar
2 eggs
1/2 c milk
3 7/8 c flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp lemon flavoring
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tbsp honey
Cream together butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add eggs and milk, scraping down sides as necessary.  Add in remaining ingredients.  Dough will be soft and sticky.  Place dough on a well floured surface and gently roll out until 3/8 inch.  Cut into desired shapes.  Bake on baking sheet lined with parchment paper at 325 for 10-12 mins, or until edges barley start to change color.
4 1/2 c powdered sugar
4 tbsp corn syrup
3 tbsp milk
1/4 tsp lemon flavoring
Mix all ingredients together until smooth.  Decorate cookies as desired!

Friday, September 20, 2013

It Must Be Fall

while sitting in court yesterday a colleague from the dark side, looking for matt, asked when my "lunch buddy" would be making his appearance.  i had to explain to some folks sitting around me that he was in fact looking for matt, and matt is in fact my lunch buddy.  i was shocked that they didn't already know this information.  we are on the internet after all.  and i verified that these folks had heard of the internet.  well, one made a comment that it has been awhile since we've posted.  yes, indeed it has.  so, lumberjack, jr, this post is for you. 

as september is nearing an end, fall is definitely in the air here.  to commemorate the season, i made a simple fall dessert:  chocolate dipped strawberries.  i know you were all expecting something like pumpkin chocolate chip bread, and believe me, that will come as the season blazes forward.  but before we say goodbye to summer completely, we will still enjoy its fruits.  we will just decorate them to look like fall.  the goal was to put jack-o-lantern faces on my "pumkins," but alas, we were too eager to eat them. 

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

1 c white chocolate chips
red and yellow food coloring
black gel frosting
melt the chocolate chips in the microwave 15 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until they are melted.  add food coloring until the desired hue of orange.  stir.  dip strawberries in chocolate and place on wax paper.  refrigerate until chocolate hardens.  with black gel frosting, add jack-o-lantern faces.

as halloween draws nearer, you could also make ghosts.  this would take less effort than the pumpkins because you wouldn't have to dye the chocolate.  and you would only need 2 black dots for eyes.  i'm always looking out for you, my lazy friends.